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What is a Temporary Order?

Temporary orders, also called pendente lite orders, are orders that are only in effect while your divorce or custody case is pending. Once final orders are made temporary orders go away. Either party may request a hearing to determine temporary orders stating, for example, who stays in the house, who/how the bills get paid, when each parent has custody of the children, and restraining either party from conduct that the court considers inappropriate.

Having a hearing to establish a temporary order is never a good thing because it means that you have exponentially increased the attorney fees being incurred in your case. It means you had to pay your attorney just to get an order that will only be in effect so long as the case is pending. Oftentimes temporary hearings are held because emotions are running high between the parties, there isn’t full disclosure, and/or the attorneys aren’t fully aware of each party’s income, assets, debts, and parenting strengths/weaknesses.

Your situation may require a temporary hearing if you aren’t receiving enough financial support to provide for the children, the bills aren’t getting paid, or law enforcement is being called because the two of you cannot agree on a temporary custody schedule. However, it is always advisable to avoid a temporary hearing if reasonable agreements can be made for what is going to happen while the case is pending and until your attorneys or the judge can decide what should happen on a permanent basis